A nonprofit publication of the Kentucky Center for Public Service Journalism

Bevin’s Facebook video deriding state’s media representatives garners over 1 million views

By Tom Latek
Kentucky Today

FRANKFORT – A video of Gov. Matt Bevin berating Kentucky’s news media for what he described as “fake news” has gotten more than 1 million views.

Bevin has made social media his primary outreach since becoming governor, often bypassing traditional media to speak directly to Kentuckians.

“Don’t get outraged when I go around you and talk directly to people, because, the reality is, I’m going to keep doing it because people deserve the truth,” Bevin told Capitol reporters while dressing them down on Friday. “And if you don’t give it to them, I will.”

Gov. Matt Bevin poses for a selfie with Rep. Ken Upchurch’s son after his first budget address to a joint session of the Kentucky General Assembly. Bevin has amassed a huge following on social media. A recent video received 1 million views. (LRC Photo)

Bevin’s Facebook post containing his recorded criticisms of the Capitol press corps has been shared 19,000 times, received more than 15,000 likes, and has amassed about 2,400 comments.

The video, calling for Bevin’s Facebook followers to see the governor take reporters to the woodshed, was the governor’s most viewed, surpassing the 930,000 views for one he posted in March 2016 calling for lawmakers to get to work on passing a state budget.

The Capitol press corps has focused numerous stories in recent weeks about a home where Bevin lives with his wife and children.

“Someone asked me, guess it was Sherlock Holmes, if I lived there,” Bevin said. “Obviously, I live there. That’s why the state security is there. It’s why I drive in and out of there each night. It’s why my children play there, live there, sleep there. Of course, I live there.”

The governor accused reporters of “blurring the line between reporting and editorializing.”

“You now have people writing in the news column things that no matter how you slice it, Zippy the Monkey could look at that and say that’s an opinion piece,” he said.

Bevin’s communications director, Amanda Stamper, said the governor’s message resonates with Kentuckians who are able to hear directly from the governor, rather than hearing a filtered version from news outlets.

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